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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

No Pictures...Need Advice

My friend Andy and I were talking this afternoon about making our homes look as "Prim" as we can. Neither of us seem to be able to achieve this look. I'm asking any and all prim decorators out there for their input on what makes a home look prim. Feel free to email me pictures at if you wouldn't mind sharing your faves with me. I know I follow many many blogs that decorate using the primitive style and I drool over them each and every time I see their homes. Share your thoughts with me. I'm looking for secrets to this type of decorating.

I seem to shop with no plans for the things I buy. I just see something I like and I get it. I find I have too many little things because I either like the price or it just catches my eye at that moment. I need to stop doing this but sometimes I can't help myself.

Now I might add that Colonial style decorating also appeals to me. Do these two styles mix in a cohesive manner? Anyone decorating this way want to share some advice on how I might marry these two styles?

Thanks for listening to me this afternoon. I sure hope someone has some good advice that can get me on the right track.

Anxiously awaiting a response,


  1. Hi Amy!....I am the same way with buying too many small items because they are so much easier to afford but I have come to the conclusion that it's all about the furniture! I have looked at pictures in magazines and online and the homes that look really great all have one thing in common....the I guess we need to stop buy all the smalls and save up for the bigs! LOL


  2. GO BIG!!! That definately is the trick with starting out...I took most ALL my country cottage/shabby chic furniture and repainted and primmed out most all of it when I first started making the changeover!

    I then scoured lots of garage/yard sales for furniture I could easily paint out or "marry" together with other pieces to create more primitive pieces in my will be surprised as to what people will have up for sale!

    Next, I suggest TEXTILES, TEXTILES, TEXTILES!!!!.. change out curtains, shower curtains, bedding, placemats, runners and throw pillows!...little items=BIG IMPACT!...And DON'T be afraid to just start with muslin curtains if you can't afford the nicer curtains we all want!...I find LOTS of fabrics at my local Joanns and use my 40% off coupon for that to make runners, curtains, etc with!

    Next, GET RID OF ANY GOLD PIECES YOU MAY HAVE!!! that 80's home interiors Gold (brass) that I am refering to!...Bring in some Silver pieces that have a tendency to look like Pewter!

    Lastly, ADD WOOD!!!!...You can do so much with wooden pieces!..scour thrift shoppes and yard sales for wooden candlesticks, trays, bowls, well as LOTS of Wooden signs!

    Hope that helps!...If you need more help...shoot me an email...I can guide you to some wonderful eyecandy!!!

  3. Amy,
    I do agree with the others that bigger pieces will help give you the look that you want. Also wood pieces...I've picked up many old wood boxes, cubbies, shelves, and small wall cupboards at thrift shops. I also have 2 old wood ironing boards and have gotten some sugar buckets that I've stacked together.
    I have a folder that I keep pictures from magazines that have the style I love...and I look for pieces that I like from them when I go thrifting.
    I love my primitive stuff...but am liking it with a little farmhouse romance touch added to it.

  4. Yes it's the bigger pieces that really make the house look prim. But I can't really afford to replace my bigger pieces, so I just sort of fill in here and there with favorite things that I love. I'm sure your place looks beautiful! Post some pictures!

  5. Hi Amy,

    I have to agree with Char. She has some really awesome ideas and truly knows how to redo a purchase from Garage/Yard Sales and such. Another thing that I truly enjoy is when Char supplies a pattern on something prim. I have been very lucky to have hubby build me a few things which turns out to be alot cheaper then purchasing in a store.

    I on the other hand am not lucky when it comes to materail or something from a thrift shop because I don't have either close by. But I DID make my curtain in my Dining Room. I purchased the fabric when I was away. At first I panicked because I spent $20 on the material but when I starting looking for prices on curtains, I soon realized that $20 was cheap.
    I was not a sewer but self taught myself and let me tell you, you will still find errors in my work but don't be scared of the machine. Practice makes perfect...since the beginning, I have made quite a few things myself.

    I am also very lucky to have a man build me my furniture pieces dirt cheap. He is retired and enjoys doing it. Take for instance, my bowl rack cost me $35, my stand that holds my crocks was also $35. Can't beat that, you will pay ALOT more in stores for these pieces. So maybe if hubby is handy with wood or if you find someone who maybe retired and not charge a arm and a leg.

    Good Luck...I know you will find that right decor look that you are searching for.

    Also I just wanted to say that I have been mixing the Primitive and Colonial look together. There's really no rule when it comes to decorating. It's to each their own.

    I will be looking forward to seeing some home pics :)

  6. Thank you ladies for all your wonderful advice. Its nice hearing input from others to give me something to think about that maybe I've missed. I even had a gentelmen email me with some really good advice. Furniture and lighting and textiles might be what I have to work on more than anything else. Once I get that down, I think my smaller pieces might fall into place.

  7. Great post, Amy; and I loved reading these responses. It's made me rethink some of my decorating as well.

    The pictures you have shown of your house are beautiful, and I think you do have a knack for prim/country decorating. I think sometimes (I know I do) we just get tired of our stuff. I find moving things around from room to room gives a whole new look to a piece.

    Good luck; you have great taste, and that's a start!

  8. Hi Amy,

    I think I'm with you. I can never achieve just a prim look like I love....I think it's because I like the rustic log cabin look too along with farmhouse...maybe that's why! But I do think having the big pieces make a difference...which I don't have...the furniture like Johnston Benchworks and such! I refuse to get new furniture until I can get what I want too....I need to get to saving after this adoption!

    Okay if you get lots of advice and suggestions, please share it!

    Have a great day, Amy! And I think your house looks great as it is!


  9. Hi Amy,
    I hear ya about buying too many little things. I've always done that as well because it was easier to spend small amounts than big. Over time, I'm learning to say no to the smaller things and save for the bigger things.
    I've always thought you've done a fine job decorating in the prim style.
    Sorry I'm not much help in that area, I often struggle too. I hope you get lots of helpful advice. Maybe you could compile a list of good ideas and post them. (hint, hint ;)
    Hugs to you~ Birgit

  10. Amy,

    I think we've all been in your shoes. I know I drool over a lot of the homes I see on the interenet because they have "the look". I agree with Char's post.

    I have scoured the internet for free patterns to make the things I want or I make my own. I am lucky enough to have a man who can build the things I want just by seeing a picture.

    But I also think color is important in a prim home. Brown, red, black, mustard, blue, and beige give your home the prim look.

    There are many more ideas I find in magazines too. I just made an item for my home yesterday I saw in Country Sampler that I will be posting Monday. I already had everything on hand.

    Just keeping reading blogs and asking questions!


  11. Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving such a nice comment. I have a tendency to buy the small stuff too, but have found that it can end up being too cluttered looking for my taste. My new thing is to buy things that I already have a plan for and avoid things that I am just not sure what to do with. I also have a file of pictures of homes that I love and get tons of ideas and inspiration from. I do love primitive homes, but I also love flea market style, country chic and cottage style and so I tend to mix things up a bit.

  12. Hi, I just thought I'd let you know that I cannot read the black print on the dark background on your blog. Perhaps white would work. I'd like to come back and visit later.